Five Things Feminist Women Should Remember (when dating men)

*Disclaimer: I write for heterosexual cis women*

Feminism is getting more and more press, for better or for worse. Out of the ashes of burnt bras arrived a wave of feminism unlike any other. Be that as it may, it doesn’t hurt to remind others (and myself) of these 5 gems when dating guys relatively ignorant to this thing we call feminism.

1. Opening up every conversation with “FEMINIST!” May scare away truly great guys.

I know you’re passionate. But just like you may not want to sit through a conversation about erectile dysfunction every day, he may not want to hear about patriarchy every day.

2. Just because he’s not well-versed on the tenets of feminism doesn’t mean he’s a chauvinist.

Feminism has a public image problem. You can’t blame a guy for getting the wrong idea about feminists- particularly if he’s never been close with one. You may be the one to show him the way. Which means:

3. Be prepared to answer a lot of questions.

If you don’t want to “teach” someone, cool. Just know you could be missing out on an opportunity to learn more about your partner and yourself.

4. Watch out for phonies.

Beware of the “yea I’m a total feminist!” guy who doesn’t hesitate to mansplain domestic violence, rape/sexual assault, subjugation of women.

5. Feminism is flexible.

Like any school of thought, feminism has the small but loud group of angry die-hards. You don’t HAVE to be atheist and feminist. Or queer and feminist. Don’t try to silence others because they don’t fit into your brand of feminism. Beyonce’s “Flawless” did a good job of explaining feminism to the masses: Equality of the sexes.

Remember, dating a newbie means there’s going to be a learning curve. Take baby steps.

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